The 26th August 2017 saw Bridging Abilities and Adapt2Move host our seventh Annual Paralympic Awareness Event at the Stellenbosch University’s Sport Science Department. A total of about 84 learners with disabilities along with about 30 school teachers, bus drivers, and support staff, roughly 36 Sport Science students, 54 Bridging Abilities groups members and 24 other attendees gathered at the welcoming which was done by Candace Vermaak, one of the executive directors of Bridging Abilities. We were pleased to welcome Paarl School and Dorothea School who as yet haven’t been part of our regular attendees.
The learners were then divided into 4 groups. There were three halls in which various games and activities took place. Each group had an opportunity to take part in two of the four Parasport rotations. Each rotation lasted 45 minutes and incorporated an introduction to the sport, various skills and lastly games.
The Games Hall was used for Basketball while the Sports hall hosted sitting volleyball as well as racquet sports. Lastly, the Dance Hall played host to visually impaired cricket. Both the sitting volley ball and racquet sport hall was easily accessible and catered for children that were wheelchair bound or with more severe movement difficulties. This provided an inclusive environment and a healthy competitive spirit between everyone. The Basketball group included children with cerebral palsy that were able to walk/run around. Much fun was had learning the different skills and practicing with the use of balls, light balls and standard basketballs which allowed everyone to take part. The visually impaired cricket worked really well as the students creatively made plastic balls with small bells in them that could be heard by the children and helped them aim and hit the ball when it came their way. The children really loved this rotation. The children that were not visually impaired were given blindfolds in order to make it inclusive and fair for all to play together.
Adapt2Move and the students worked well together and made sure to adapt and problem solve so that all the children could stay involved and learn a new sport while having endless amounts of fun. The kinderkinetics students and all the volunteers also took part and help the children where ever they could.
We would like to thank all our friends who supported our Sponsor A Child Campaign. We would also like to acknowledge the Cape Winelands Municipality who once again sponsored the food and medals for the event as well as some of the transport for the Bridging Abilities community group members. The event would also not be possible without our partners, the Stellenbosch University’s Sport Science Department and the students of the Adapt2Move Program.
Written by: Sarah Arnold (Adapt2Move) and Toni Mould (Bridging Abilities)